|Black and Blue|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Deon Taylor|
|Written by||Peter A. Dowling|
|Music by||Geoff Zanelli|
|Edited by||Peck Prior|
|Distributed by||Sony Pictures Releasing|
|Box office||$20.5 million|
Black and Blue is a 2019 American action thriller film directed by Deon Taylor from a screenplay by Peter A. Dowling. The film stars Naomie Harris, Tyrese Gibson, Frank Grillo, Mike Colter, Reid Scott, and Beau Knapp, and follows a rookie police officer who goes on the run after she witnesses a murder.
The film had its world premiere at the Urbanworld Film Festival on September 21, 2019 and was released in North America on October 25, 2019, by Screen Gems.
This article needs an improved plot summary. (October 2019)
U.S. Army veteran Alicia West (Naomi Harris) returns to her hometown in New Orleans where she is recruited into the city's police department. Alicia is reminded by her new partner Kevin Jennings (Reid Scott) about the differences of residing in the community she grew up in and the police department.
One day, while responding to a 911 call, Deacon tells Alicia to wait for backup as he goes to investigate. After a while, Alicia spots gunfire coming from the building across the street and heads over, armed with a Glock pistol and a vest fitted with a body camera.
There, Alicia witnesses Deacon and two more police officers murder an unarmed drug dealer. When one of the officers, Terry Malone (Frank Grillo), attempts to assume the situation to her, the other officer, Smitty (Beau Knapp), panics upon seeing Alicia's body cam and shoots at her, causing Alicia to fall onto the ground below.
A wounded Alicia tries to get help but is shunned by everyone in the community for being a police officer. When a fellow police officer arrives, Alicia realizes the department has been blackmailed by Terry, forcing her to hide out in the home of Milo Jackson (Tyrese Gibson), a member of the community who is reluctant to hide her. Terry also blackmails criminal kingpin Darius into putting out an open bounty on Alicia.
While recovering in Milo's home, Alicia learns that Deacon, Terry, and Smitty are corrupt cops while researching footage of the murder captured on her body cam including police cam footage on a laptop. Alicia also discovers that if she does not upload the footage exposing the murder within twelve hours, it will be erased by the corrupt officers. To gain Milo's trust, he requests for Alicia to hide her identity as a policewoman so she won't be killed.
While being pursued by Terry and gangsters working for Darius, Alicia devises a plan — she will hand off the footage to Milo while she lures Terry and Smitty to a vacant apartment. The plan goes well as she takes out Smitty and engages in a fight with Terry, which ends with Terry being shot in the chest by Jennings.
Meanwhile, Milo uploads the footage online, exposing the activities made by the corrupt officers. Terry is arrested and Alicia's name is cleared, thus earning back the respect of the community.
In August 2017, it was announced Screen Gems had acquired Peter A. Dowling's spec script Exposure, and Sean Sorensen will produce the film under his Royal Viking Entertainment banner. In August 2018, it was announced Deon Taylor would direct the film, and Roxanne Avent will serve as an executive producer under her Hidden Empire Film Group banner. In December 2018, Naomie Harris joined the cast of the film, which was retitled from Exposure to Black and Blue. In January 2019, Frank Grillo, Reid Scott, Tyrese Gibson, Beau Knapp, Mike Colter and Nafessa Williams joined the cast of the film. In March 2019, James Moses Black joined the cast of the film. In April 2019, Frankie Smith joined the cast of the film.
Principal photography began on January 16, 2019, and concluded on February 28, 2019. The movie was shot using CineAlta cameras, Sony α7S II and Sony Xperia 1 smartphones. All these devices are marketed and manufactured by Sony, the parent company of Sony Pictures and Screen Gems.
Black and Blue had its world premiere at the Urbanworld Film Festival on September 21, 2019. It is scheduled to be released on October 25, 2019. It was previously scheduled to be released on September 20, 2019.
In the United States and Canada, Black and Blue was released alongside The Current War and Countdown, and was projected to gross $8–11 million from 2,062 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $3.1 million on its first day, including $675,000 from Thursday night previews. It went on to debut to $8.3 million, finishing sixth; social media monitor RelishMix said the low figure was blamed on audiences being "bored with this type of cop thriller". In its second weekend the film fell 50% to $4.1 million, finishing eighth.
On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 47% and an average rating of 5.44/10, based on 75 reviews. The site's critics consensus reads: "Black and Blue is elevated by Naomie Harris' central performance, even if the end result suffers from a simplistic treatment of topical themes." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 53 out of 100, based on 21 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film a grade of "A-" on an A+ to F scale, while those PostTrak gave it an overall positive score of 80%, including an average 4 out of 5 stars.
Candice Frederick of TheWrap wrote: "Black and Blue is chock-full of heart-pounding car chases and suspenseful moments that are certain to entertain mainstream audiences, but the film falters when it attempts, beyond its title to reflect a necessary and under-discussed conversation about societal issues."
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